Ball Fertilizer - Executive Summary
At all three facilities owned by Smith Bros. Farm Supply, Inc. the following safety policies are performed on March 1 of each year. The CEO and all three Branch Managers, independent of each other, review and inspect all ammonia equipment and facilities at each of the three locations. Notes are made and discussed on March 5. If there are any deficiencies noted by anyone a follow-up inspection is again performed by the same personnel on March 20 at which time the deficiencies will have been corrected. On April 1 the CEO gives one last inspection insuring that all equipment is in proper operating order before the season starts on approximately April 10. |
All employees are required to attend an ammonia safety training class during March. All long-time employees are observed by the CEO and Branch Manager filling ammonia nurse wagons and other related activities concerning ammonia. New-hires, if there are any, are not permitted to work at the facility by themselves. A senior person
must be present for them to even touch the loading equipment until such time as they are deemed bo be totally competent in all procedures.
In a worst-case scenario being defined as the storage tank coming apart in two pieces and the contents being released in ten minutes there are no mitigation procedures or controls that could possibly be put into place to minimize the consequences of such an event. We could only hope that the Good Lord will be with us. In a more realistic situation of a hose breaking and releasing a small amount, probally less than ten pounds the closing of valves and truning off pumps can be done almost immediately. We have not had any accidential releases at any of our three locations within the past five years. In fact I cannot recall a time when we have ever had an accidential release. Should a release be made our first call will be to the Fire Department and the next call will be made to our Local Emergency Planning Committee. Anyhydrous Ammonia is a very
important farm input product. It is by far the most economical form on nitrogen that today's farmer can use. It is unfortunate that is has the porperties it has but we have lived with Anyhydrous Ammonia for almost fifty years without a serious mishap.